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Governor-elect must decide on pension funding

MONTPELIER — State Treasurer Beth Pearce has released the amount of money the state should set aside in next year’s budget for pension funds, leaving the winner of next Tuesday’s gubernatorial election to decide whether the state will provide 100 percent in their first recommended state budget. Pearce said the actuaries have recommended the state contribute $52,065,396 into the state employees’ pension fund. That amount would cover annual contributions and continue on a course to have the state employees’ pension system retire all of its unfunded liabilities by 2038. The payment in the pension, known as the actuarially required contribution, or ARC, was calculated by the state’s actuary, Buck Consultants, according to Pearce. She said the firm reviews census information to determine how much should be set aside. Continue Reading →

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Treasurer: Pension funds need financing changes

MONTPELIER — Vermont’s three pension funds were battered by the Great Recession and are currently funded below levels recommended by actuaries, but the state has made some adjustments to improve their positions and state Treasurer Beth Pearce says she will seek long-term changes to the way they are financed to further ensure stability. Vermont, like many other states, has struggled to fund the retirement benefits promised to teachers and state and municipal employees. The cost of health care benefits for retirees has grown faster than revenue growth, and the pension funds the state manages saw market losses during the Great Recession. The three pension funds managed by the state — for teachers, state workers and municipal workers — provide retirement benefits, including health care, to tens of thousands of Vermonters. There are more than 8,000 active state employees, and nearly 10,000 active teachers and more than 6,600 active municipal employees. Continue Reading →

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